Missouri and Mississippi river bridges in Iowa

Bridges are listed north to south. Each bar represents the time the bridge (and, where applicable, its nearby replacement) has been open. For exact dates see the tables under the timeline. (Only bridges that at one point carried a numbered highway are included. Interstate 29 goes over the Big Sioux River and is not listed.)

Dates are compiled from the Library of Congress' Historic American Engineering Record (HAER), the Iowa DOT's Historic Interstate Completion Map, Jason Hancock's Iowa Highways Page, John Weeks' Bridges and Structures of the Upper Mississippi River, newspaper microfilm research, and various government and city websites. Letters in brackets indicate footnotes. A blank space in "Tolls lifted" means the bridge was free when it opened. Bridges are listed in order one would encounter them going downstream.

Missouri River

Bridge Opened Tolls lifted Closed or demolished
Siouxland Veterans Mem. Bridge January 15/July 22, 1981 [A]
Combination Bridge January 21, 1896 February 8, 1951 Blown up Feb. 23, 1981
Sgt. Floyd Memorial Bridge November 22, 1976
Burt County Bridge [B] December 19, 1955 December 1, 2013
Blair Bridge August 1991 [C]
Abraham Lincoln Memorial Bridge June 29, 1929 September 29, 1962 [D] Blown up November 1991
Mormon Bridge (WB) April 21, 1979
Mormon Bridge (EB) December 14, 1952 [E] April 21, 1979
Interstate 480 Bridge October 21, 1966
Ak-Sar-Ben Bridge October 30, 1888 September 25, 1947 Torn down 1968
Interstate 80 Bridge December 15, 1972
South Omaha Veterans Mem. Br. January 18, 1936 September 25, 1947 September 8, 2009
New Veterans Memorial Bridge May 28, 2010
Bellevue Bridge 1952 never
New US 34 Bridge October 22, 2014
Plattsmouth Bridge February 1, 1930 [F] never
Waubonsie Bridge October 17, 1930 July 1, 1955 Torn down 1986-87
Nebraska City Bridge November 1986

[A] Two lanes open January 15, 1981; all four lanes open July 22. Closed May 6-December 9, 1982, because cracks were found in the girders. Reopened to four lanes May 1983.
[B] Completed in 1951 over dry land. The Missouri River was then rerouted under the bridge. (AP article in Omaha World-Herald, October 4, 2003)
[C] Dedication ceremony was August 8, but bridge would not be open to traffic for a few days (Missouri Valley Times News, August 9, 1991)
[D] Missouri Valley Daily Times, September 27, 1962. A plaque at Washington County Historical Museum says "Free Bridge Nov. 1, 1962" (picture here) but I don't know why that date is different. The bridge was dedicated July 26, 1929, approximately a month after opening, but US 30 was not routed onto the bridge until the end of 1931.
[E] Not dedicated until May 31-June 1, 1953 (source)
[F] Although the bridge's year is usually given as 1929, which is when it was built, HAER documentation says the bridge wasn't completely done until January 25, 1930, and opened to traffic a week later. Dedication was not until May 16. The city of Plattsmouth bought the bridge for $1 on November 30, 2007, and then it was closed from April 21 to November 9, 2008, for major repairs (Lincoln Journal Star/Nebraska City News/KMTV websites)

Mississippi River

Bridge Opened Tolls lifted Closed or demolished
Black Hawk Bridge June 17, 1931 May 31, 1957 (reopening) [A]
US 18 Suspension Bridge March 7, 1932 [B] July 17, 1954 Torn down Dec.'74-June '75
Marquette-Jolliet Bridge November 14, 1974 [B]
Eagle Point Bridge May 1902 [C] never 1983 [D]
Dubuque-Wisconsin Bridge August 21, 1982
High Bridge (Wagon Bridge) November 25, 1887 never Closed August 31, 1943
Julien Dubuque Bridge August 31, 1943 December 27, 1954
Savanna-Sabula Bridge December 31, 1932 July 1, 1987 [E] 2017 (projected)
Lyons-Fulton Bridge (original) July 4, 1891 never Closed January 20, 1975
Lyons-Fulton Bridge (current) January 20, 1975 December 17, 1982
Gateway Bridge June 30, 1956 December 17, 1982
[F]
Fred Schwengel Bridge October 27, 1966
New I-74 Bridge
Thanksgiving 2019???
Iowa-Illinois Mem. Bridge (WB) November 18, 1935 December 31, 1969 2020 (projected)
Iowa-Illinois Mem. Bridge (EB) November 23, 1959 [G] December 31, 1969 2021 (projected)
Government Bridge December 1, 1896
Centennial Bridge July 12, 1940 May 2, 2003
Interstate 280 Bridge October 15, 1973
Muscatine High Bridge May 7, 1891 never Torn down April 1973 [H]
Norbert Beckey Bridge December 2, 1972 July 1, 1987
MacArthur Bridge March 29, 1917 never August-September 1993
Great River Bridge August/October 4, 1993 [I]
Fort Madison Swing Span July 1928 never
Keokuk Rail Bridge 1916 January 1949-May 1952 [J]
Closed to vehicles 1985
Keokuk-Hamilton Bridge November 23, 1985

[A] Closed from March 18, 1945 to May 31, 1957, because ice dams damaged the bridge. (Allamakee Journal)
[B] North Iowa Times, March 10, 1932, and special section November 13, 1974, indicate the bridge was open to vehicle traffic on March 7, 1932. However, the Iowa Highway Commission did not extend the US 18 designation from the ferry landing to Marquette until June 7, and the dedication ceremony was June 9 (which is the date given on the bridge plaque).
Why the two L's in "Jolliet"? According to the state of Wisconsin, that's the official name, citing documents that gave this alternate spelling. As a side note, the name on Jol(l)iet's memorial marker in Quebec City, Quebec, has two L's.
[B] Closed January 16-August 12, 1981, because cracks were found in the girders (New York Times via Jason Hancock)
[C] Bridge lengthened (additional spans) in 1936 due to construction of Lock and Dam 11. (HAER)
[D] US 61 and US 151 were routed off the bridge May 14, 1969, which removed a great deal of vehicle traffic, but the bridge stayed open for car and pickup traffic. (Dubuque Telegraph-Herald)
[E] Closed for major repairs and installation of current steel deck May 20-December 11, 1985
[F] Closed for redecking February-December 1999, closed for repainting and reconstruction March-November 2006
[G] Upon completion of the new bridge, the original was temporarily closed for repairs. Four-lane traffic began December 22, and there was a dedication ceremony January 20, 1960.
[H] Closed June 1-October 12, 1956, because a car slammed into a girder (Quad-City Times, August 3, 2007)
[I] The new bridge was built in the same place as the old one. Two lanes of the new bridge opened in August, and the new bridge was fully opened to traffic in October.
[J] Bridge temporarily toll-free from January 13, 1949, to late May 1952 (HAER/Keokuk Daily Gate City)

Page created 8/26/07; last updated 5/27/16

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